VIDEO On Oaths and God

By Dr. Jerry Newcombe – May 19, 2019

The attempt to remake our country into a secular wasteland continues unabated.

Even the U.S. House of Representatives has begun leaving God out when swearing in witnesses.

For example, a video of such an omission is beginning to make the rounds.

Graham Ledger, the host of “The Daily Ledger” on One America News Network, showed the video of this purposeful omission of God at a swearing in; and he commented, Democrats Delete God:

 

“So God is gone now. Poof. No more God in the people’s House. This is not about a religious test. This is about the founding of this republic. We are a country built on a core belief in God and Judeo-Christian values. Thus, the Declaration of Independence is now under de facto assault by this crew. One nation under God, divisible by one political party that seeks to attack liberty and justice for all.”

In the video, we see Democratic Congressman Steve Cohen from Tennessee, who is the chairman of this particular committee, swearing in guests. Cohen is perhaps best remembered as the congressman eating KFC on the Congressional floor in a publicity stunt recently.

Cohen asks some witnesses about to testify:

“Do you swear or affirm under penalty of perjury that the testimony you’re about to give is true and correct, to the best of your knowledge, information, and belief?”

Congressman Michael Johnson (R, LA) politely interrupts with a “parliamentary inquiry.” He states:

“I think we left out the phrase ‘so help me, God.’”

Cohen replies directly to Johnson, “We did.” Johnson asked if the witnesses could swear in again, but this time with the traditional phrase, “So help me God,” added. Chairman Cohen shakes his head and says, “No.” And he adds, “If they want to do it…but some of them don’t want to do it.”

Johnson states:

“Well, it goes back to our founding history. It’s been part of our tradition for more than two centuries, and I don’t know that we should abandon it now.”

Cohen looks at Johnson, and his face seems to communicate:

“What planet is this guy from?”

Johnson adds:

“Could I ask the witnesses if they would choose to use the phrase?”

Then Congressman Jerome Nadler (D-NY), shuts this discussion down, saying:

“We do not have religious tests for office or for anything else, and we should let it go at that.”

I once interviewed Michael Johnson for Christian television. As an attorney, he specialized in religious liberty. He told me:

“Can the government acknowledge the role of God in human affairs? Now we know that the founders have always done that since the beginning—the founding of the nation.”

So the answer is yes.

Johnson also added:

“Americans intuitively have an appreciation for absolute truth and justice.  We were programmed that way by our Creator, and that’s what the founders acknowledged from the very beginning….The enemies of the faith would have us remove all vestiges of Christianity, all vestiges of the God of the Bible from the public square; and that’s not what the Constitution says, and that’s not what we’re required to do.”

Another Republican Congressperson weighs in on this issue. Liz Cheney from Wyoming says:

“It is incredible, but not surprising, that the Democrats would try to remove God from committee proceedings in one of their first acts in the majority….They really have become the party of Karl Marx.”

When my brother-in-law saw this clip, he responded:

“If you think about it, our rights are inalienable because they are endowed by our Creator. If we no longer believe in a Creator, how soon will our rights no longer be inalienable?”

Exactly. That is what at stake in this debate on a seemingly arcane subject.

The founders followed the classic tradition of swearing in on the Holy Bible and in the name of God. Why are oaths taken that way? Because they recognized that we are accountable to God who sees all and who will one day judge us all.

I remember in seminary, one of my professors said:

“It’s not what we (professors) expect that matters. It’s what we inspect.”

Inspection means accountability. It means we have to do the assignments, which they will then inspect.

In his Farewell Address, George Washington said:

“Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice?”

Take God out of oaths, and they have no real meaning.

Thomas Jefferson asked:

“Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?”

Acknowledgment of God is another victim, it would seem, of today’s culture war. And with Him goes any assurance that the witness is telling the truth.

Swearing in without reference to God at a House Subcommittee (February 28, 2019)

 

Jerry Newcombe, D.Min., is an on-air host/senior producer for D. James Kennedy Ministries. He has written/co-written 31 books, e.g., The Unstoppable Jesus Christ, American Amnesia: Is American Paying the Price for Forgetting God?, What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? (w/ D. James Kennedy) & the bestseller, George Washington’s Sacred Fire (w/ Peter Lillback)   djkm.org  @newcombejerry      www.jerrynewcombe.com

 

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Doubting

May 20, 2019  by JC Cast

Do not allow thoughts of doubt to steal your joy. Doubtful thoughts do not make you a weak or noncommitted Christian; it only shows that you’re human.

Throughout my four-plus decades as a Christian, I have experienced many times when doubt creeped into my thoughts during periods of complacency, or crashed to the forefront during traumatic situations.

Similarly, I do not know one Believer that has not experienced various degrees of doubt during their Christian walk. A fact which is equally confirmed in God’s Word.

Thomas, one of the original twelve disciples of Jesus, was both inquisitive and zealous. We see his zeal portrayed is John 11:16: “Thomas, nicknamed ‘The Twin,’ said to his fellow disciples, ‘Let’s go too—and die with him.’”

Unfortunately, that is a side of Thomas many people forget since he has been tagged as “Doubting Thomas” down through the centuries because he chose to disregard the initial reports of Jesus’ resurrection. Like all humans, Thomas was susceptible to doubt, and it arose at that particular time. Though, he wasn’t the only doubter in the Bible.

There are numerous examples of Believers showing their humanity in the form of doubt. Too many, in fact, to deal with in a blog post. However, I will touch on one more that I found surprising; yet, it truly shows that all humans can succumb to moments of doubt. That individual was John the Baptist.

Similar to the prophecies announcing a coming Messiah, there were prophecies of one that would come before the Messiah and proclaim his coming. Approximately eight-hundred years before the birth of Christ, Isaiah wrote the following in Isaiah 40:3: “Listen! I hear the voice of someone shouting, ‘Make a road for the Lord through the wilderness; make him a straight, smooth road through the desert.’”

The aforementioned prophecy, along with others pertaining to a “Crier of Good News,” were fulfilled with the arrival of John the Baptist.

In Luke 1:13 we see that the angel Gabriel told Zacharias that he and his wife, Elizabeth, would have a son, and they were to name him John.

Similarly, in Luke 1:30-31, Gabriel tells Mary that she will bear God’s son, and to name him Jesus. He also tells her that her aunt Elizabeth is equally pregnant. In other words, for those who may have forgotten, John the Baptist and Jesus are cousins.

In John 1:32-36, John the Baptist confirms, not once but twice, that Jesus is the chosen one that he’s been preparing the way for.

“I didn’t know he was the one,” John said again, “but at the time God sent me to baptize he told me, ‘When you see the Holy Spirit descending and resting upon someone—he is the one you are looking for. He is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ I saw it happen to this man, and I therefore testify that he is the Son of God.” — John 1:33-34.

The following day, Jesus walked by John the Baptist and two of his disciples, and John declared, “See! There is the Lamb of God!” — John 1:36.

All of his life John the Baptist knew he would eventually be used by God. And, from all accounts, he performed his ministry with a zeal rarely matched by others mentioned in the Bible. And yet, during his imprisonment by King Herod, this robust Believer showed he was still human. In Luke 7:18-19 we read the following: “The disciples of John the Baptist soon heard of all that Jesus was doing. When they told John about it, he sent two of his disciples to Jesus to ask him, ‘Are you really the Messiah? Or shall we keep on looking for him?’”

Just consider that for a moment. The coming of John the Baptist, like the coming of the Messiah, had been prophesied. The angel Gabriel spoke to a parent of both John and Jesus (John and Jesus were cousins). And, to top it off, God had specifically given John the Baptist a sign to look for during his ministry that would confirm who the Messiah was—a sign John saw and publicly proclaimed after baptizing Jesus. Yet, he still succumbed to a moment of doubt during a time of trial.

If it can happen to John the Baptist it can happen to each of us. Just remember, such doubts do not make you a weak or noncommitted Believer. It’s merely a sign of your humanity. As long as you do not allow the doubts to override your Christian walk you will come out stronger after the experience or trial.

Personally speaking, the doubts could never overcome the truth I hold in my heart or the abundance of evidence I’ve found through many years of study.

 

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The Root of Bitterness

By Adrian Rogers

The Root of Bitterness
Bitterness blows out the candle of joy and leaves the soul in darkness. Here is what God’s Word has to say about bitterness:

Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord. Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled. (Hebrews 12:14-15).


The Germination Of Bitterness

The seed of bitterness is a hurt that is planted in someone. It may be intentional or unintentional. Someone does not mean to hurt you, but you were hurt. Sometimes the hurt is only imagined. No one has hurt you, but somehow you feel that someone has done something wrong to you. There are also times when the hurt may be the very chastisement of God upon your life. That is the context of Hebrews 12:14-15.

The soil of bitterness is a heart that harbors hostility and does not deal with hurt by the grace of God. When someone becomes bitter, the bitterness takes root in the heart and grows deeper.

The world is full of people who have not dealt with an old hurt. They look for things to criticize, people to find fault with, and ways to justify the way they feel. Have you ever seen people who are hypercritical? Generally, they are bitter people. They know how to push your hot buttons until you react in a way to further justify their bitterness. Then, they can say, “Aha! I was right. I have a right to be bitter.”


The Devastation Of Bitterness

We have learned about the seed and the soil of bitterness, now let’s look at the root and the fruit of bitterness, which is found in our text from Hebrews 12:14-15.

The Root Of Bitterness
The root of bitterness is underground; it is easy to hide and camouflage. Seldom do you find anyone who will admit that they are a bitter person. They will either deny it or disguise it. A bitter person is hypersensitive, ungrateful, insincere, holds grudges, and has mood swings. The Fruit Of Bitterness

Bitterness will affect you physically, emotionally, and spiritually because the fruit of bitterness is an acid that destroys its container. When your heart is bitter, God will not be real to you be. Why? Because hatefulness and holiness do not dwell in the same heart. And without holiness you will not see the Lord (see Hebrews 12:14).


The Eradication Of Bitterness

There are three steps to eradicating bitterness:

1. Let God Reveal It.
Sometimes people say, “I know my heart, there’s no bitterness in me.” Truth of the matter is you don’t know your heart. God’s Word tells us, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9). A deceitful heart cannot diagnose a deceitful heart. You need to let God the Holy Spirit do radical surgery.

2. Let Grace Reveal It.
A response of bitterness is never right when someone has done something wrong to you. You need to ask God to forgive you, and He will by His grace. If someone has wronged you, cut it down and forget it. By the grace of God, bury that hurt in the grave of God’s forgetfulness. Justice is God giving us what we deserve, mercy is God not giving us what we deserve, grace is God giving us what we don’t deserve.

3. Let Good Replace It.
Hebrews 12:14 says, “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” You cannot be holy unless you follow peace with men. It is so worth it when you forgive. But, you say, “Look what they’ve done! I am not going to let them off the hook.” Well, they are not on the hook — you are! When you forgive, you set two people free and one of them is yourself.

You will discover that your life is more joyful when you uproot your bitterness. If God gave us justice, every person reading this would die and go to hell. Thank God for His mercy that removes His hand of punishment from us. Praise God for His grace that gives us a brand new life!

 

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‘Totally devastated’: Major Christian broadcaster suffers catastrophic firebombing

‘Nothing survived. If it didn’t burn, it melted’

(Image courtesy Pixabay)

(Image courtesy Pixabay)

It’s one of the largest Christian networks in the world, and it has now become the victim of a catastrophic firebombing.

The Jerusalem studios of Daystar were completely destroyed over the weekend during a weekend arson attack.

“Reduced to a pile of rubble and ashes,” said network owner Marcus Lamb. “I’m certain the enemy thought this attack would be fatal to our efforts to share the Gospel across Israel. But as usual, he’s wrong. What the devil meant for evil, God will use for our good.”

 

An arson attack left the Jerusalem studios of the Daystar Television Network in shambles on May 18, 2019 (Photo courtesy Daystar)

An arson attack left the Jerusalem studios of the Daystar Television Network in shambles on May 18, 2019 (Photo courtesy Daystar)

“We have opened an investigation,” Israel Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told the Jerusalem Post. “All directions are being looked at.”

The pro-Israel studios in Abu Tor on Mount Zion overlooking the Old City of Jerusalem were in the final stages of a year-long renovation, and a celebration with Daystar’s key stakeholders had been set for June 1.

The fire was intentionally set at about 2:15 a.m. on Saturday, according to reports.

Dave Sharett, the contractor overseeing the renovations told the Post that security cameras were able to snag the arsonist in the act.

“They see the explosion, then the fire,” he explained. “The next second, you see a rope going over the balcony and him climbing down the rope. He goes down to the floor below, gathers the rope and runs off.”

“The control room I would say is probably totally devastated,” Sharett told CBN News. “The controls actually start here with the electric panel, the main electric panel and anything plastic is totally melted.”

“It was a beautiful like living room set up, real casual set up, nice chairs, stools, tables, nothing survived. If it didn’t burn, it melted.”

An arson attack left the Jerusalem studios of the Daystar Television Network in shambles on May 18, 2019 (Photo courtesy Daystar)

An arson attack left the Jerusalem studios of the Daystar Television Network in shambles on May 18, 2019 (Photo courtesy Daystar)

He indicated police have two working theories concerning possible motivation.

The first is the firebombing was religiously motivated since “the TV station is Christian and it’s Ramadan, and Muslims are upset and blah, blah, blah,” he told the Post.

The other scenario involves an Arab worker at an adjacent studio who in recent days became upset with some of Daystar’s employees. That employee has not returned to work since the blaze, Sharett said.

“We’ll find the truth,” he said.

“I believe that God has a reason and a purpose and at the very least he’ll redeem what has happened here. So, these ashes will raise up, be raised up and proclaim the glory of God,” Sharett told CBN.

Daystar is fastest-growing and second-largest Christian TV network on the planet, sending the Good News via satellite to more than 680 million households in 200 countries.

At age 27, Lamb and his wife, Joni, began what would eventually become the Daystar Television Network in 1984 at a single station in Montgomery, Alabama. In 1990, the Lambs transplanted themselves to launch a second station, KMPX-TV, in the Dallas-Fort Worth market. Daystar’s first live broadcast as a network was on New Year’s Eve 1997.

Today, in the wake of the catastrophe, Lamb is urging people to keep looking on the bright side:

Even now we’re exploring every option and discovering how best to rebuild on a foundation the Lord laid for us long ago. Just as it was in the days of Nehemiah, who rebuilt the crumbling walls around Jerusalem, God will stand with us as we remain fully committed to the work of His Kingdom. And my hope is that you’ll join with us!

I wonder what areas of your life need restoration? Keep in mind we serve a God who knows every hidden wound and heartbreak, and nothing is ever beyond repair. I believe that as you partner with us to rebuild the Jerusalem studio, the Lord will release His healing power to redeem what seems utterly lost or completely out of reach in your heart.

He’s not simply a good God; He’s also good at being God and wants to mend the frayed edges of your faith as you put your trust in His promises. So I invite you to give today, and let’s believe for full restoration in every area of your life. Together, we’ll watch the Lord bring beauty from the ashes of tragedy and make all things new!

NOTE: Daystar has set up this link for those interested in helping the network rebuild its studio in Jerusalem.

Follow Joe on Twitter @JoeKovacsNews

https://www.wnd.com/2019/05/totally-devastated-major-christian-broadcaster-suffers-catastrophic-firebombing/

Five Ways God’s Love Changes You

May 9, 2019 missionloved_hck1bk

I’m an action oriented person. Give me a to-do list and I’ll tackle it until every item has a neat little check mark next to it.

So the idea of just sitting in silence and contemplating God’s love and nearness seems well–not very productive. How can stillness accomplish anything?

During one busy season of my life I decided to try a little experiment. During this period I had a to-do list the length of a football field. Just thinking about the list was caused a panicky feeling. So to keep stress from being a frequent visitor, I decided to set a timer to go off every hour. At the sound of the timer, I stopped what I was doing for a couple of minutes and contemplated God’s great love for me. Sometimes I listened to a favorite song about God’s love, sometimes I reviewed words of God’s love from Scripture, sometimes I just closed my eyes and remembered: Jesus loves me.

The results were astounding. My productivity increased with these breaks instead of decreased. Stress wasn’t looking over my shoulder every minute. I remembered I didn’t have to work alone–God was more than willing to work alongside.

This small act of basking God’s love made such a difference in my day, that I took a look in God’s Word to see what it says about the effects of Divine love. Here are 5 ways God’s love changes us.

God’s love banishes fear. 1 John 4:18 says: “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear” I noticed that recalling God’s immense love for me chased away the fear of not being good enough. The fear of not pleasing people evaporated because, well, what did that matter if the King of the universe loved me?

God’s love gives us strength against Satan’s attacks. Look at Psalm 59:10,17: “My God in his steadfast love will meet me; God will let me look in triumph on my enemies…O my Strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love.” We are safe in the fortress of the Redeemer’s love. God’s love gives us the strength to resist Satan’s arrows.

God’s love helps us trust. Psalm 13:5 says, “But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.” It’s easy to trust someone who loves you unconditionally. When we think about God’s love our trust grows.

God’s love leads us to contentment. One of my favorite verses is Psalm 90:14, “Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.” When our hearts are filled with the beauty of God’s love, we are satisfied. Cravings of the world fade away.

God’s love draws us to worship. King David wrote in Psalm 5:7, “But I, through the abundance of your steadfast love, will enter your house. I will bow down toward your holy temple in the fear of you.” When we contemplate God’s love for us, our hearts bow in worship. We enter God’s presence to praise Him for His priceless gifts.

Try my experiment. Set an alarm or timer to go off every hour. Stop for a moment. Close your eyes. Remember God’s love. Watch it change you.

This is an article by Sharla Fritz

 

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VIDEO Child Sex Trafficking in America Issues: A Guide for Parents and Guardians

Report Child Sex Trafficking to the CyberTipline!

Overview

Child sex trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, obtaining, or advertising of a minor child for the purpose of a commercial sex act, which involves the exchange of anything of value – such as money, drugs or a place to stay – for sexual activity.  

While any child can be targeted by a trafficker, research has shown that traffickers often target children with increased vulnerabilities and prey upon a child’s vulnerability and use psychological pressure and intimidation to control, and sexually exploit, the child for financial benefit.  However, the issue of child sex trafficking is complex and not all instances of child sex trafficking involve an identified trafficker.  In such cases, it is the person buying sex from the child who exploits the child’s vulnerabilities. Traffickers and buyers of children for sex encompass all racial, socio-economic and cultural groups. Child sex trafficking has devastating consequences for its minor victims, including long-lasting physical and psychological trauma, disease, and/or even death.

A21 and NCMEC teamed up on the “Can You See Me” campaign to increase awareness that child sex trafficking is happening in plain sight. Victims of child sex trafficking are everywhere. Would you recognize the signs? Can you see them?

Risk Factors 

 

While any child can be targeted by a trafficker, research has shown that traffickers often target children with increased vulnerabilities, including:

  • Children who are chronically missing or who frequently run away (especially 3+ missing incidents)
  • Children who have experienced childhood sexual abuse, especially if the abuse was unreported or unaddressed, or resulted in the child being removed from the home
  • Children who have experienced prior sexual assault or rape  
  • Children with significant substance abuse issues or who live with someone who has significant substance abuse issues
  • Children who identify as LGBTQ and have been kicked out or who have been stigmatized by their family.

Red Flags

While no single indicator confirms the existence of child sex trafficking, several indicators combined can mean it is more likely that a child is being exploited or is actively being targeted and recruited.  That is why being aware of the following indicators is so important:

Behavioral Indicators

  • Child has a significant change in behavior, including increased virtual behavior, or associates with a new group of friends
  • Child avoids answering questions or lets others speak for him or her
  • Child appears frightened, resistant, or belligerent to law enforcement 
  • Child lies about his or her age and identity
  • Child looks to others before answering questions
  • Child does not ask for help or resists offers to get out of the situation (child does not self-identify as a victim)
  • Child seems coached in talking to law enforcement
  • Child uses trafficking-related terms like “Trick,” “The Life,” or “The Game”
  • Child is preoccupied with “getting money” (e.g., displaying photos of cash)

Physical Indicators

  • Child has multiple cell phones and/or electronic devices
  • Child has large amounts of cash or pre-paid credit cards
  • Child has no ID, or ID is held by another person 
  • Multiple children are present with an unrelated male or female
  • Child has unusual/unexplained sexual paraphernalia (such as bulk condoms or lubrication) (More +)
  • There is evidence the child has been or will be traveling (child is living out of suitcases, at motels, or in a car)
  • Child has a name or symbol tattooed, burned, or branded onto his or her body, particularly when coupled with the child’s reluctance to explain the tattoo, the child’s tattoo matches other children’s tattoos, the tattoo indicates money or ownership (ex. MOB, barcode or $)
  • Child references traveling to other cities or states or is not from the current location; the child may also lack knowledge of his or her travel plans, destinations, and/or his or her current location.
  • Child has hotel keys, hotel receipts, or other items from a hotel/motel
  • Presence of an overly controlling or abusive “boyfriend” or older female
  • Child is recovered at a hotel, street track, truck stop, or strip club
  • Child has notebooks or slips of paper containing phone numbers, dollar amounts, names, or addresses
  • Child has items or an appearance that does not fit his or her current situation (e.g., a homeless or runaway child who has money, electronics, new clothes or shoes, and who has his or her hair and nails done)
  • Child references online classified ads or escort websites
  • Child references traveling job opportunities (including modeling, singing and/or dancing in a music group, or magazine sales crew)
  • Child has unaddressed medical issues or who goes to the ER or clinic alone, or with an unrelated adult.

By the Numbers

Of the more than 23,500 endangered runaways reported to NCMEC in 2018, one in seven were likely victims of child sex trafficking.

Today, the average age of child sex trafficking victims reported missing to NCMEC is only 15 years old.

Child sex trafficking has been reported in all 50 U.S. States. 

What NCMEC is Doing About it

Providing a Specialized Response

NCMEC provides specialized technical assistance, analysis and recovery services on cases involving child sex trafficking, including:

  • reviewing CyberTipline reports related to child sex trafficking;
  • assisting on cases of missing children involved in, or at risk of, trafficking;
  • providing technical assistance and training to help with the identification, location and provision of recovery planning and services to victims of child sex trafficking 
  • supporting the recovery of victims by making referrals for post-recovery resources and services for child sex trafficking victims and their families
  • providing peer-to-peer support for families of child sex trafficking victims

Training Professionals on How to Identify and Respond to Child Sex Trafficking

NCMEC provides specialized child sex trafficking training for law enforcement and educators to help identify and respond to child sex trafficking that can be provided online or in-person. To learn more about our training options and to apply, click here.

Helping Survivors Rebuild Their Lives with Hope Bags

Often, when child victims of sex trafficking are recovered, they have only the clothes on their backs. NCMEC provides “Hope Bags” to survivors, filled with basic necessities, such as toiletries, a change of clothes and shoes, and snacks, to help ensure they have all they need in the hours and days after they are recovered.

Your donation provides survivors with a Hope Bag and other valuable resources to rebuild their lives. Your support will contribute towards our mission to help bring an end to child sexual exploitation and find the missing.

$10 provides all new toiletries
$15 provides snacks, a journal, and a food gift card
$25 provides a fresh change of clothes and shoes
$55 provides a complete Hope Bag

   

Building Awareness about the Issue


WHAT IS CHILD SEX TRAFFICKING?

Child sex trafficking occurs when a child under 18 is involved in a commercial sex act where sex is traded for money, food, shelter, drugs or anything else of value. This crime is occurring in all types of communities throughout the United States and traffickers are making an alarming profit while victims endure countless days and nights of rape, abuse, torture and violence.

It’s important to remember that even if the child believes it was his or her choice, they are a victim, and an adult or perpetrator is exploiting their vulnerabilities. A child cannot consent to sex with an adult. As such there is no such thing as child prostitution and that phrase should never be used when referring to child sex trafficking.

 

KNOW THE WARNING SIGNS

Children frequently do not reveal their victimization because they’re being manipulated by a trafficker who has physical and psychological control over them, or out of the shame and guilt that may exist as a result of their exploitation. Parents and guardians should familiarize themselves with some of the indicators of child sex trafficking.

CHILD SEX TRAFFICKING INDICATORS

·         Large amounts of cash, multiple cell phones or hotel keys;

·         A history of running away or current status as a runaway;

·         Tattoos or branding related to money or ownership and/or the child is unwilling to explain;

·         Signs of current physical abuse and/or multiple sexually transmitted diseases;

·         Presence of, or communication with, a controlling older boyfriend or girlfriend;

·         Gang involvement, especially among girls;

·         Travel to other states or staying at hotels when he or she runs away.

For a full list of indicators visit http://www.missingkids.org/theissues/cse/cstt

HOW TO KEEP YOUR CHILD SAFE

One of the most important things you can do to protect your child is to create an environment in which he or she feels comfortable talking with you. Open communication is key. Help make your children more aware by explaining the dangers of sex trafficking and by challenging myths and misconceptions that glamorize commercial sex. This includes having conversations with them about online safety and how traffickers/pimps use social networking sites and apps to mask not only their appearance but also their true intentions while recruiting new victims.

Do you trust the people with whom your child interacts? Knowing who your child is with is always crucial to protecting his or her safety. Also, it’s very important to monitor what your child does and who your child is interacting with on the internet.

Lastly, if something doesn’t seem right, ask questions!

Child Sex Trafficking in America

HOW DOES A CHILD BECOME A VICTIM?

Child sex trafficking victims could be anyone your daughter, neighbor, or nephew. Traffickers recruit victims in schools, online through social media, at shopping malls, bus stations or even foster care or group homes.

Perpetrators of sex trafficking often target children believing their age makes them easier to manipulate and control.

Factors that make children particularly vulnerable include:

  • A history of sexual abuse. Traffickers will work to identify any vulnerability in a child’s life and use that to create a closer bond to the child and to maintain future control;
  • A history of running away or current status as a runaway; and
  • An unstable home life and/or involvement in the child welfare or foster care system.

Pimps/traffickers may entice children using physical and psychological manipulation and sometimes violence. They will create a seemingly loving or caring relationship with his or her victim to establish trust and allegiance that remains even in the face of severe victimization.

WHO ARE THE PERPETRATORS?

Traffickers can be anyone who profits from the selling of a child for sex to a buyer, including: family members, foster parents, friends, gangs, trusted adults, or “boyfriends”.

Much of the trafficking of children has moved from street corners and truck stops to the internet, where children are sold for  sex. Online classified sites allow traffickers and buyers anonymity and accessibility when exploiting children. Further, societal glamorization of “pimp culture” may make a child less likely to recognize or be wary of manipulative behavior.

In some cases, there is no identified trafficker, and it is the person buying sex from the child who is exploiting the child’s vulnerabilities. For instance, if a child runs away, a buyer may exploit the child’s need for food and shelter offering to provide that in exchange for sex.

A child cannot consent to being bought and sold for sex, and anyone purchasing sex from a child is committing a serious crime.

If a child is missing, the child’s legal guardian should immediately call law enforcement and then the  National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST® (1-800-843-5678).

If you suspect a case of child sex trafficking, you can call 1-800-THE-LOST® or make a report at 
www.cybertipline.org.

Copyright © 2017 National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. All rights reserved.

http://www.missingkids.org/content/dam/missingkids/pdfs/NCMEC%20CST%20fact%20sheet_ParentGuardian.pdf

 

What Happens When We Don’t See God Do What We Hope

April 9, 2019 by Dylan

 

I believe that it is the power of God’s Love which truly transforms and changes our world to be more like His Kingdom. As John 3:16 says, it was “For God so loved the world the He sent His Son…” and Jesus, His Son, is the Light that our world – and each one of us – needs. It is from the place of God’s Love that we have salvation, healing and true flourishing of life through Jesus.

My hope is to carry His Love to all His creation. Sometimes in ministering to others, we might try to seek to see a certain result that we want to see. We might want to see someone healed or someone have a radical encounter with Holy Spirit. But a question I’ve been thinking about lately is what happens when we don’t see something outwardly powerful occur? What happens when someone doesn’t get healed? What happens if someone doesn’t choose to give their life to Jesus right in the moment we might wish they would?

For some, even asking such questions might be viewed as not having enough faith, because our belief and expectation is always that God’s will is to heal and save, which certainly is true. Yet I propose that it is in those times when we don’t see what we believe and hope will happen, that we are actually invited into the gift of increased faith. Do we still believe that God is Good? Do we still believe that God is Love? Are we still showing others God’s Love and how much they are valued by not only God, but by ourselves?

People are not objects of ministry, to be viewed as something to save or something to heal. Others, like ourselves, all need to feel known, cared about and loved. No matter what happens, we can always experience for ourselves, and show God’s Love to all people.

 

Original here